Before I get to the Lunch Time Lectures – today and next week, I thought I would bring you some exciting news about the Becket 2020 online conference, the Manorial Register for Kent, and the CHAS online conference coming up shortly, as well as just briefly mentioning that there is now a small group working on medieval and early modern wills for Newenden and surrounding parishes as part of the Lossenham project. We had our first online meeting this week and everyone is enthusiastic with work having already started and we are now going up a gear – more on this in future weeks and thanks to everyone involved.
I thought I would first bring news of the next and hopefully last online events the Centre will be running as we inch towards getting back to physical rather than virtual events. Again, please come and join us for Professor Paul Bennett’s Becket Lecture next Wednesday 16 December starting at 7pm.
Having led a guided walk around ‘early medieval Canterbury’ for delegates on the second day at the ‘Negotiating Power in the Early Middle Ages’ conference organised by Charlotte Liebelt, with the assistance of Drs Leonie Hicks and Mike Bintley, at CCCU, I thought I would first mention another medieval history conference that will take place next Friday and Saturday. This, too, will be at CCCU and is entitled ‘Rebellion in Medieval Europe’. One of the keynote speakers next week will be Dr David Grummitt (Head of the School of Humanities, CCCU), and the conference organisers are Drs Adrian Jobson and Paul Dalton, with Professor Louise Wilkinson.
First of all – advance notice that on 3 January 2019 the essay collection edited by Drs Diane Heath, Victoria Blud and Einat Klafter on Gender in Medieval Places, Spaces and Thresholds will be available ‘in all good bookshops’, or you can pre-order now at: https://www.sas.ac.uk/publication/gender-medieval-places-spaces-and-thresholds . Published by the Institute for Historical Research, it will also be available to download at: http://humanities-digital-library.org/index.php/hdl . To celebrate this excellent event, the book will be launched at the Gender and History conference at Durham in January, with a follow up launch at Canterbury Christ Church because of the involvement of CCCU historians and that the book comes out of the Gender and History conference held here in 2017.
Next week will be more meetings than events, but it is great to know that preparations for Becket 2020 are continuing to develop on a wide range of fronts. Among these will be the conference at Canterbury Cathedral in November 2020, for which the plenary speakers are already in place and the call for papers will go out fairly soon. Other events planned include an even bigger Medieval Pageant than usual, a light show and events linked to several other medieval saints up and down the country – a truly national celebration of cathedral cities in England and Wales.
Next week looks very exciting. We have the Becket Lecture on Tuesday when Dr Rachel Koopmans will tell us about her fascinating new findings about the Becket stained glass windows in Canterbury Cathedral. Among her exciting discoveries with Leonie Seliger are the earliest images of these pilgrims that had been thought to be a 19th-century creation. This is ground-breaking research, and everyone is welcome to come to hear her in Powell Lecture Theatre at 6.30pm (following a wine reception).
I’m delighted to say that the ‘Tudors and Stuarts History Weekend 2019’ website is almost there and all being well it will be possible to book tickets for the tours from later next week, including those led by Paul Bennett (Canterbury Archaeological Trust). These tickets always go pretty quickly, so if you are interested, please do book early to avoid disappointment.
This week I thought I would start with Paula the Polar Bear’s visit to Canterbury Cathedral precincts on Wednesday. She only visited her adoring public for short periods due to the warm weather – Canterbury is hardly the Arctic even with global warming and deep ice sheets melting to the north of Greenland.
Many thanks to Dr Diane Heath and Dr Pip Gregory for running the ‘Young Medievalists’ Corner’ yesterday (funded by Swale Borough Council) – more on that soon; but also a reminder that Diane and Harriet Kersey will be back for their third Saturday on 21st July. The doors of Faversham Town Council’s ‘Heritage Hub’, as part of Faversham Society’s Open Weekends, will open at 10 am, with ‘young medievalists’ activities’ from 11am – do come and join them.
After another very successful History Weekend, I would first like to thank all the great speakers (see below), but equally the brilliant audiences we had at all 27 events from ‘Saturn’s Fury’ puppet show in Waterstones on Friday morning to Dr Michael Jones’ talk on the Black Prince and Professor Carenza Lewis’ lecture on new discoveries about the impact of the Black Death that were the last parallel events on Sunday afternoon. Without YOU the audience the Weekend would be meaningless, and your enthusiasm, engagement and searching questions covering the wide range of topics on offer was wonderful from the organisers’ perspective – THANK YOU!